Things You Can Do to Increase Your Visitors’ Attention Span

July 7, 2016

9:00 pm

Technology may have added a new level of convenience to our lives, but are they making a significant difference when it comes to our attention span? It’s been found that users have a much shorter attention span than previously found, mainly because of our increasing dependence on technology.

Knowing this information could mean the difference between just attracting visitors to your page and retaining users. To put it mildly, your website has a lot to accomplish in a few seconds. Without grabbing their attention in 8 seconds or less, you’ve lost them. Every second counts in the online advertising and marketing space – and here’s how to make the most of it.

What a Novel Idea

Our minds are hard-wired to get attracted to novelty. A novel experience captures our attention quickly, and the mind regards it as something essential.

Novelty can be relayed through a number of things, including the unknown. And what’s unknown sparks curiosity. Once the unknown becomes known, we look for more unknowns to keep feeding that inner curiosity. How can you present non-stop novelty on your website?

A page that has simple text heavy instructions is plain and dull to look at; it would be surprising if visitors stuck around after glancing at the homepage. Other successful sites, on the other hand, cuts right to the chase and gives users exactly what they would expect to find within a few short seconds. Yes, there isn’t much curiosity to be had but just look at that novel design.

You can certainly make text-heavy work for you, but make sure there’s a healthy mix of images and that the text is broken up graciously to make for easy reading.

People Love Contrast

Our brains work for us when they see contrast in the environment, which also happens to be an evolutionary human trait. We seek contrast to make quick decisions and avoid general confusion which can result in delayed decisions.

Get online visitors to pay better attention to your product by demonstrating benefits with before/after shots.

Sequential Flow

How are you structuring content on your pages? Is your text all over the place? Are you using too many images?

Your main page should have a clear introduction letting people know what they’re getting by visiting you. This follows by a brief sales copy and directing visitors to the next step to start availing the service – your call-to-action.

Having a clear, logical and sequential flow is not only easy on the eyes but makes people want to learn more about your business.

Relevancy is King

As Jerry Seinfeld said, “This whole idea of an attention span is, I think, a misnomer. People have an infinite attention span if you are entertaining them.”

No trick in the book can save you if your content is plain boring and unappealing to your audience. When people come across content that’s intrinsically motivating and enjoyable, they WANT to pay attention, no matter how short or long of an attention span it requires.

Make Photos Work for You

This can vary from industry to industry, but for some, impactful images really paint a thousand words. Anti-smoking drives is one example. Many prefer to use images for the most part in order to get across thought-provoking messages, establishing an instant connection with their visitors. These images elicit very strong emotions and prompt people to see things differently.

It’s ultimately those first few seconds it all boils down to. Keep it direct, simple and sweet so that your audience can relate to it on a personal level. Overcomplicating things to distract visitors unnecessarily isn’t the best strategy.

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Mateil Gavril is president and CEO of He is a creative marketing manager with a proven record of driving revenue gains and brand awareness through the intelligent use of social media.

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